SMEs should be proactive in operation: President

President Truong Tan Sang has called upon small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to continue being proactive, enterprising and ingenious in their operation to stand firm in both domestic and global economic fields.

President Truong Tan Sang meets representatives of small and medium-sized enterprises.
President Truong Tan Sang meets representatives of small and medium-sized enterprises.

At the same time, SMEs should further sharpen their competitive edge so as to keep up with the world’s development trends, the State leader said at a reception for more than 100 outstanding business people in Hanoi on February 5.

He highlighted the important role of SMEs in the national socio-economic development agenda and commended their active engagement in the Party, State, and the Vietnamese Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee’s activities such as the campaign “Vietnamese people prioritise Vietnamese goods” and the programme on building modern rural areas.

He asked SMEs to ensure an optimal working environment and a higher income for their staff, while forging links among businesses and concentrating on both domestic and export markets.

The SMEs association should develop its network at the grassroots level and help businesses overcome difficulties, whilst developing human resources, and promoting trade and technological transfer, he said.

The President confirmed that the Party and State would continue to put forward incentives to help businesses operate in a favourable business environment.

Statistics showed that SMEs make up an overwhelming 97% of the total 600,000 active businesses across the country.

Last year, they created jobs for 3.5-4 million workers and contributed over 40% of the gross domestic product and 30% of the total State budget.

However, in light of the prolonged global economic crisis, only 20% of SMEs have been performing productively, while 60% are struggling to survive and the remaining enterprises could potentially be absorbed or halt operations all together.

In response, businesses proposed that the State place the restructuring of SMEs in the national strategy on an equal level with the scheme on restructuring State-run businesses, public investment, and the banking system.

Enterprises also appealed for more preferential policies so that they could make more effective contributions to the national target of stabilising the macro-economy, curbing inflation, increasing integration capacity and competitiveness.